The challenge of pipeline opponents 'venue shopping': This weeks' best quotes


Here are some of the best quotes from news coverage in the Daily Oil Bulletin for the week ending June 30, 2017:

“We are only three months into the [fiscal] year so we will watch and we will wait and look at the oil [price] as it goes forward…We look at prudent and cautious estimates and I am fairly confident that over the course of the year we will get to where our forecast was.”

-Alberta Finance Minister Joe Ceci, discussing the province’s annual report for 2016-17 and budget for 2017/18, which includes a forecast for WTI to average $55 per bbl WTI. The price is currently hovering around $45/bbl.

“That [NAFTA] relationship I don’t think has ever been more important than it is today, particularly from an energy perspective…Energy is going to play a very important role.”

—US Energy Secretary Rick Perry, commenting on upcoming talks to “massage” the North American Free Trade Agreement between the US, Canada and Mexico.

“If you are trying to oppose a specific project and stifle that development, then you look for the different venues where you can do that.

“If you are a [pipeline] project proponent, you have to win on every one of these venues. You must make your case and get the [approval] of all the venues—the National Energy Board has to approve, the federal government has to approve, the provincial government has to approve, and the financial agencies need to be on board.

“If you are a project opponent, however, you basically only have to win in one venue. If you can stop a project in any of these venues, you have a much larger chance of stopping it overall.”

—Kent Fellows, an economist and research associate in the energy and environmental policy group with the School of Public Policy at the University of Calgary, discussing the trend for opponents of major resource projects to target financing bodies.

“There’s no regulator in the world that’s done this. This was a very big step in Alberta, but it had to be done.

“But I’ve got to tell you: It’s been a hard, tough road to this point and it’s something where we don’t normally work in that space. We do now, and we know how to do it, but it was a bit of a bangy road as we moved through.”

—AER CEO Jim Ellis, commenting on the situation the regulator has been navigating with Lexin Resources. Two weeks ago the company, which was petitioned into receivership by the AER because of orphan well liabilities, agreed to voluntarily include its related entities into the receivership process and co-operate in addressing safety issues at its sites. Michael J. Smith, the director of Lexin, also accepted responsibility for Lexin’s non-compliances and has agreed to pay $175,000 and not to control any licensee or approval holder in Alberta.

"For a country like Canada, keeping within the 2 [degrees] as formulated by the international community it would mean essentially moving towards a carbon-free energy system by mid-century.

“It would mean that in our domestic energy system, any fossil fuels that were used would have to be combined with some form of greenhouse gas [GHG] mitigation.”

—James Meadowcroft, a professor in the School of Public Policy and Administration at Carlton University, co-author of the study Re-energizing Canada: Pathways to a Low-Carbon Future. He emphasized that the goal for Canada should be a “carbon emissions-free” energy system, not necessarily one that has no use for fossil fuels.

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